Glacier National Park – Many Glacier Hotel

In case any of my friends were wondering if I dropped off the face of the planet this weekend, I was in Montana in the Glacier National Park area for a mini-vacation and a hippie music festival (Babbfest). The music wasn’t really my cup of tea, but I had something to do with marketing it, so it was a good excuse to get away for a weekend.

The festival itself was Saturday, and I didn’t leave there until around 4am. This made the trip back to my hotel a little eerie. Driving down a winding road at 4am, without being able to see a light in any direction. It was so dark that when I got to the hotel, I couldn’t see the ground (or a path) to get from the parking lot to the hotel (about 400 feet), so I kept flashing the parking lights with the alarm remote to give me flashes of light so I could see. The hotel I stayed at that night was Many Glacier, which is a bit of a creepy hotel in itself (Stephen King got the idea for the movie “The Shining” from this exact hotel… seriously).

Okay, so around 4:30 am, I finally get to my room. I take off my shoes and open the door to put the do not disturb sign on the door (which was like 60 seconds after I got in the room), and there’s a dude standing right at my door when I opened it. Needless to say, I almost shit my pants. Turns out he was just putting the early checkout slips under everyone’s door. But still… don’t sneak up on me like that buddy… especially when I’m staying in the hotel from The Shining, and it’s 4:30 am! :)

Oh dude… there’s no cell phone service within about 50 miles of this place, so I was pretty much cut off from the world (not only did the hotel not have Internet service either, but every plug in the entire hotel was the old 2 prong types, which means I couldn’t plug my computer in anywhere either).

There was a crazy fire over the weekend, and Alison got some pretty sweet pictures of it that night… which I’ll post as soon as she sends them to me.

Estonia Trip

This is what my slave does while in Estonia (I wish I could have gone)…

I guess they were supposed to play with grenades and rocket launchers too, but they were too late to do that. Sucks! :)

Digg Swarm

It’s been out for a couple days now in Digg labs, but I have to finally say that Digg’s Swarm is pretty pimp… It will be fun when they release their API and we can start building our own stuff.

Digg Swarm draws a circle for stories as they’re dugg. Diggers swarm around stories, and make them grow. Brightly colored stories have more diggs.

Check it out for yourself:

http://labs.digg.com/swarm

Wow… Crazy Traffic.

First I got wired, then someone came along and slashed me, then someone dugg me, then I was farked by someone I hardly know. After basking in the afterglow, a vampire came by and slashed me (again!) and told me I was delicious.

The last 24 hours saw more traffic to my blog than any other day (it was a good stress test for WordPress, and my caching mechanism seems to have worked well).

But here’s the low down… Wired Magazine issued their August issue in the last few days, which had an article about the whole MPAA lawsuit in there. Slashdot picked it up, and made it’s front page. Digg then picked it up (front page there too) and it was one of the most popular stories for the week within a few hours. Then Fark picked it up and it was a front page story there too.

Now here’s the funny part… today Slashdot is running a front page story about how popular that Slashdot article was yesterday. :)

Looks like it also made the front of del.icio.us too.

The Important Part

Okay, so now that I have 150 million eyes, I want to take advantage of that situation for the greater good of mankind, and ask a favor… if you are reading this and you happen to know Alessandra Ambrosio, will you send me her phone number? :) (BTW, if you don’t know who she is, click here.)

Update

Someone saw it in a print edition of some big Swedish newspaper and sent it to me:

http://www.aftonbladet.se/vss/it/story/0,2789,862915,00.html

No idea what it says, but who’s that handsome chap? :)

Update #2

Hahaha! I was just getting dinner and some random person recognized me.

Wired Magazine Article

Okay, okay… I’ve had the issue for a couple days now, and I was a bit torn if I was going to post anything about it on my blog or not. I didn’t like a few things about it… For one thing, I’m not a “hero” (I’m a pretty normal guy), but they titled the article Shawn Hogan, Hero. Anyway, today it seems everyone knows because I’ve been bombed with emails, phone calls, etc. about it. People have scanned the article and posted it around and it also made the front page of Slashdot today.

So I guess at this point the world knows about it, so if you want to read it, here it is…

http://wired.com/wired/archive/14.08/start.html?pg=3

P.S. – it was kind of funny to see my mug shot in Wired Magazine’s table of contents (in the August print edition).

Update

Just saw someone dugg the Wired article and it made the front page of digg.com too.

Update #2

I’ve been getting bombed with requests from people to donate. If anyone really wants to donate, take that money and donate to the EFF instead.

Basement All Dug Out

So it looks like the basement is more or less dug out now… ended up being about 1000 cubic yards of dirt. They should start hauling the dirt away later this week.

To get a general scale, Stephanie is standing over there, and she’s not a little kid like the picture makes her look. You can’t really tell how big the hole in the ground is from that angle, but it’s pretty big. The basement is about the size of a 3 bedroom apartment. :)

Dude, It’s Hot!

Living in San Diego has me completely spoiled as far as weather/temperature goes… It’s always like 65-80° any day of the year.

Except for today… it’s f’ing hot outside right now (see graphic on the right).

I checked the temp where my mom lives, and it’s 112° there. Yikes!

There’s some poor sucker outside on the street in pants and a black shirt twirling a sign on the corner all day. What a sucky job that has to be right now. :)

Random Email #26

Here’s an email I just received (in it’s entirety)…

I live in an apt bldg. in Dutchess Co, NY. I had bats in my apt 6/12/06. Landlord CLAIMS that extrminator was at my apt on 6/21/06 to check and found no holes/areas where bats could enter bldg. I was home that day; saw no one, Ehrlich Pest Control said they were not here. I do not believe my landlord b/c they are ignorning my requests for a copy of the Ehrlich report. How can I verify of Ehrlich was indeed to my specific apt anytime between 6/12 and now & their findings? Freedom of Informtion Act? Can’t spend a lot of time/$ on this, but want info.

I am the great and all knowing Shawn… unfortunately my crystal ball is in the shop right now, and I can’t give you the answer. Nor do I know who you are.

Lots Of Digging

Went up to the site yesterday, and there’s lots of digging going on now. 3 tractors up there (a normal backhoe, a little one for doing foundation footings and then a bit excavator one for digging the basement). It’s hard to tell how much dirt was pulled out, but check out the picture of the excavator (the cab where the dude sits is enclosed on the left side of it). I figure the basement and pool will probably generate ~650 cubic yards of dirt that will need to be hauled away.

Have You Hugged A Hummer Today?

Not sure how accurate this article is, or what their methodology is for calculating the “dust-to-dust energy cost” (I only skimmed it), but it’s interesting…

http://www.reason.org/commentaries/dalmia_20060719.shtml

Comparing this data, the study concludes that overall hybrids cost more in terms of overall energy consumed than comparable non-hybrid vehicles. But even more surprising, smaller hybrids’ energy costs are greater than many large, non-hybrid SUVs.

For instance, the dust-to-dust energy cost of the bunny-sized Honda Civic hybrid is $3.238 per mile. This is quite a bit more than the $1.949 per mile that the elephantine Hummer costs. The energy cots of SUVs such as the Tahoe, Escalade, and Navigator are similarly far less than the Civic hybrid.

Bear Deterrent Spray

I’m going to Montana in 2 weeks for a little mini-weekend vacation, and someone mentioned to me that I should get some “bear spray” if I’m going to be hiking around. So I Google [bear spray] just to see what it is (not that I really was going to get any).

The #1 site that comes up is http://www.udap.com/

So the one testimonial they have on their front page is from some guy named Mark, and this is his picture they use:

Uhm yeah… if that’s what I’m going to look like after using their product, maybe I just won’t use their product and just skip the hiking part altogether I’m thinking. :)

Videolarm Camera Dome

I bought an exterior dome for the camera I got (to be installed at the construction site), and the damn thing was missing the two electrical transformers it was supposed to come with. No biggie though, Videolarm shipping them out today, so should have them soon.

I guess it’s not terribly important right now since there’s no electricity at the site anyway…

Update

Wow… the transformers came fast too (they overnighted them).

Wow, I’m Fat

I (almost) fell out of my chair yesterday because I’m such a fat ass that my chair broke. It didn’t just “break” either. The four welds held just fine, just the steel itself wasn’t strong enough to hold me, so the steel was ripped out where the welds were holding it together.

Oh well, it was 11 years old, but I loved that chair. It’s much harder to sit in it now because you have to keep your balance. Maybe I should get a new one…

A Ditch

So had the “pre-construction” meeting today with the HOA. Everything looks a-okay, and we are cleared (finally) for full blown construction.

I meandered up to the site after the meeting, and the half ditch is now a full ditch, with conduit pipes and gas lines in it even. The more interesting part is the basement digging should be underway on Monday, and the basement should be completely dug by the middle of next week.

Speaking of all that crap, I finally got around to ordering the network camera that I’m going to install at the site. I also ordered a dome for it (which arrived today, but the package was missing the transformers… nice). I made a PHP class/API for the camera (to control it and all that), so maybe later I’ll post it here once I’ve had some time with it to test it in real life. Now we just need electricity at the site (which should be soon).

California Is Not In Costa Rica

I booked a hotel near the San Jose airport for the first and last night we are in Costa Rica. But I just realized I booked it for San Jose, California, not San Jose, Costa Rica. Hmmm… I wonder if that’s going to make a difference or not. :)

Update

Okay, I got it squared away… not only got the reservation moved to a hotel in Costa Rica, but it was cheaper in Costa Rica, so I just got about $150 back. :)

Bush’s Crap Is Top Secret

What the hell? :)

The White House flew in a special portable toilet to Vienna for Bush’s personal use during his visit. The Bush White House is so concerned about Bush’s security, the veil of secrecy extends over the president’s bodily excretions. The special port-a-john captured Bush’s feces and urine and flew the waste material back to the United States in the event some enterprising foreign intelligence agency conducted a sewage pipe operation designed to trap and examine Bush’s waste material. One can only wonder why the White House is taking such extraordinary security measures for the presidential poop.

In the past, similar operations were conducted against foreign leaders to determine their medical condition. However, these intelligence operations were directed against dictators in countries where even the medical conditions of the top political leaders were considered “state secrets.”

From: http://www.rense.com/general72/fexc.htm

I’m Alive

Okay… I was able to recover everything from my corrupt FileVault volume and convert my home directory back to not using FileVault. The only issue right now is I’m running on 1 hard drive, not 2… but at least my computer is alive (with all my junk).

FileVault Sucks

It sounds like a good idea in theory, but Apple’s FileVault sucks, and here’s why…

I installed the Mac OS X 10.4.7 update today (from 10.4.6) and it didn’t go so well (it’s not like I have some old/bunk Mac either, I have the newest quad processor PowerMac)… A reboot would give the system a kernel panic. Gee, cool… so I put the machine into firewire target disk mode and mount it as a volume from my laptop so I can pull some suspect extensions out of there. Okay, so far so good… ended up being some dependency issue with the USB driver, so I just yanked the kernel extension for the USB driver out of there for now.

Well guess what I found out? If you use your computer in firewire target disk mode and you go into your home directory, your FileVault image becomes corrupted. Hmmm… interesting… that means I just lost everything important (everything in my home directory). Would have been nice if someone tells you this (or better yet, just not let you do it). So now I have no home directory. :) Rad.

Thankfully, I just realized that the RAID mirror on my computer broke about a month ago and never rebuilt itself… so worst case scenario is I have to go back a month. Right now I’m disabling FileVault on the month-old volume (only another 1 1/2 hours to go). When that’s done, my home directory is going to be backed up to something (iPods are handy for more than just music). Then I can see about figuring out a way to “uncorrupt” my up to date FileVault image.

Just for the record, if anyone is using FileVault, disable it. If your single FileVault disk image gets corrupt (by whatever means), you just lost all your files.

I’m going to be one pissed off bitch if I end up having to go back a month…

Update

I just found this… I hope this helps (I’ll know in another hour or so I guess)…

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=25695

Random Email #25

Another random email…

ple make me a member of orkut

One thing that is really nice about this email (and the last one), is that people have started to say “please” (partially anyway) when asking me to do their bidding of odd tasks. Unfortunately I don’t own Google (not even any stock), I don’t work at Google and I don’t even know anyone that works at Google. So I can’t get you an Orkut account. I hear Orkut is kind of lame anyway, and is mostly just Brazilian users conversing on Portuguese anyway (really).

Update

Wait a minute, I thought about this a little bit… aren’t most of the super-hot models coming out of Brazil lately? Maybe this guy is on to something…


Speaking of that, does anyone else think it’s odd that they all seem to have fraternal twin sisters? She does (Alessandra Ambrosio) and so does Giesele Bundchen (Giesele’s sister is better looking than she is too).

Good genes down there… :)

Half A Ditch

Shawn, myself and Allison went to take a peek at my property today and there’s half a ditch now (about 150′, with another 150′ to go). It’s so SDG&E can install a transformer. I guess that means construction started… sorta.

Random Email #24

Here’s an email I just got…

Please provide the LINE OF SUCCESSION to real property of a deceased who died without leaving a Will. Two sons – one deceased; one living.

I’m not really sure why anyone would mistake me for an estate lawyer, but uhm… apparently word is out that I moonlight as legal counsel. :) I would guess the deceased son probably isn’t really high up on the line of succession… but that’s just a guess.

Google Using Borg Technology

This is something interesting that someone from my forum ran across while using Google (an error page that Google spewed back at them)…

pacemaker-alarm-delay-in-ms-overall-sum 2341989
pacemaker-alarm-delay-in-ms-total-count 7776761
cpu-utilization 1.28
cpu-speed 2800000000
timedout-queries_total 14227
num-docinfo_total 10680907
avg-latency-ms_total 3545152552
num-docinfo_total 10680907
num-docinfo-disk_total 2200918
queries_total 1229799558
e_supplemental=150000 --pagerank_cutoff_decrease_per_round=100 --pagerank_cutoff_increase_per_round=500 --parents=12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23 --pass_country_to_leaves --phil_max_doc_activation=0.5 --port_base=32311 --production --rewrite_noncompositional_compounds --rpc_resolve_unreachable_servers --scale_prvec4_to_prvec --sections_to_retrieve=body+url+compactanchors --servlets=ascorer --supplemental_tier_section=body+url+compactanchors --threaded_logging --nouse_compressed_urls --use_domain_match --nouse_experimental_indyrank --use_experimental_spamscore --use_gwd --use_query_classifier --use_spamscore --using_borg

I knew Google was using some sort of Borg technology, I just didn’t have any solid proof until now. “–using_borg

Some dorky/interesting stuff in there… it looks like they may be using 2.8Ghz Xeon processors (same as my blade servers). But the more interesting stuff is the parameters they are using (pagerank and supplemental cutoffs for example).

http://forums.digitalpoint.com/showthread.php?t=103071

Still No Car

Still about 5 weeks off on getting my replacement car. Does anyone have a time machine I can borrow? Because I’m not a big fan of the car I’m currently driving (although I am thankful to Stefan for letting me borrow it).

I think the car I’m driving now kind of smells like pee (heh, just kidding.. thankfully). :)

Mac OS X 10.5 Tracks Stuff With GPS

I have no clue if this is true, but it sure would be a fun toy if it turns out to be true. :)

According to informants inside the Cupertino-based computer giant, the next version of Apple’s operating system will let you track belongings through clever GPS and integrated mapping.

Either way, it’s a little late, I could have already used it for something useful.

http://www.t3.co.uk/…next_apple_os_to_track_stolen_ipods

(via digg)